Born 1179; died Sept 20, 1246. Prince of ancient Rus’; son of Grand Prince Vsevolod Sviatoslavich Chermnyi of Kiev and Chernigov.
In 1223, Mikhail Vsevolodovich took part in the battle against the Tatars on the Kalka River. In this conflict his uncle, Vladimir Sviatoslavich, died, after which the throne of Chernigov passed to him. In 1225 and 1229, Mikhail Vsevolodovich was prince of Novgorod. With assistance from the boyars of the Bolokhovo land, a territory bordering Galich, and from King Bela IV of Hungary, Mikhail Vsevolodovich succeeded in taking possession of Galich. He occupied Kiev a number of times in the 1230’s. In 1238 he became grand prince of Kiev and transferred rule over Galich to his son Rostislav. In 1239 he ordered the death of Tatar emissaries sent to Kiev for negotiations. Subsequently, he fled to Hungary, hoping to find refuge there. All his Russian possessions were seized by other princes, who divided them among themselves.
In 1241, Mikhail Vsevolodovich returned to his homeland. In 1246 he arrived at the headquarters of Batu, hoping to receive the patent to the Chernigov land. However, he was killed by the Tatars when he refused to carry out the pagan rites of passing through purifying fire. This served as the basis for his canonization by the Russian church. However, the real reason for his execution could have been the murder seven years earlier by his order of the Tatar emissaries.
REFERENCESOcherki istorii SSSR: Period feodalizma IX–XV vv., part 1. Moscow, 1953.
O. M. RAPOV